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International Journal of Telemedicine and Applications
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 617495, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/617495
Research Article

Usability Study of a Wireless Monitoring System among Alzheimer’s Disease Elderly Population

1Institute of Informatics and Telematics, National Research Council, Via G. Moruzzi 1, 56124 Pisa, Italy
2Department of Information Engineering, University of Pisa, L. Lazzarino 1, 56122 Pisa, Italy
3Department of Computer Science & Applied Statistics, University of New Brunswick, Saint John, NB, Canada E2L 4L5

Received 22 October 2013; Accepted 19 February 2014; Published 20 May 2014

Academic Editor: Fei Hu

Copyright © 2014 Stefano Abbate et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Healthcare technologies are slowly entering into our daily lives, replacing old devices and techniques with newer intelligent ones. Although they are meant to help people, the reaction and willingness to use such new devices by the people can be unexpected, especially among the elderly. We conducted a usability study of a fall monitoring system in a long-term nursing home. The subjects were the elderly with advanced Alzheimer’s disease. The study presented here highlights some of the challenges faced in the use of wearable devices and the lessons learned. The results gave us useful insights, leading to ergonomics and aesthetics modifications to our wearable systems that significantly improved their usability and acceptance. New evaluating metrics were designed for the performance evaluation of usability and acceptability.